Exclusive Interview with
When did you start writing?
Seriously I started writing a few years ago. I always have had a passion for writing, but I never had the time. Being a mother was a full-time job. My main priority was providing for my children to ensure they had a roof over their heads and food on the table.
What makes writing your passion?
I grow up in a breathtakingly beautiful country---Romania. When I moved to the United States, I was eager to share a few of the treasures that made my country unique. Through writing, I want to unveil a world many people are unaware of.
How long have you been writing?
A few years back, I decided it was about time to start writing the book I always wanted—a book inspired by my family background.
What was the feeling when you published your first book?
I was happy that, finally, I could share my work with the world.
What’s the story behind your choice of characters?
My debut book, The House of Spark, is inspired by people and events from my family background.
What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?
It is not easy to publish a book. Lots of rules and regulations that you must be aware of.
How do you get over the “writer’s block”?
I redirect my attention to something else. Sometimes I remember the last line spoken by the main character Scarlett O'Hara from the novel Gone with the Wind "After all, tomorrow is another day." Isn't that right?
We all know the writer’s path is never easy, what makes you keep going? What advice would you give to new authors?
Advice. If you don't try, you will never know what might happen. I took many risks in my life. Some help me grow in my life some teach me a lesson. Here is my advice; Keep "swimming," no matter what.
If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?
The world has changed. Choose your friends wisely. Believe in yourself, and don't listen to the naysay.
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?
I do read the book reviews. I am eager to learn what people think about my book, good or bad. They empowered me to do better. The one thing I can't entirely agree with is when someone thinks they are entitled to advertise a review about my book without my permission.
What is the feeling when you get a good review?
I am grateful, especially when the reviewer ponders why he gave my book a good review. It's a big plus for my book. I dedicated my book to young adults, and I must attract young readers to be eager to read the book.
Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?
In my debut novel, The House of Spark, many characters are inspired by people with whom I grew up. I describe a few of the most beautiful landscapes in Bucharest, places that play an important role in my life growing up.
Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?
Maria, the step-grandmother, is a hard-working woman for whom no risks are too small when she tries to accomplish something meaningful. She is caring, compassionate, and kind. I did not base the character on myself, but I tried to follow those concepts of life.
What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?
I think the book cover is very important, but do you remember the old saying, "Don't judge a book by the cover?" I found that saying to be true many times.
Do you connect with your readers? Do you mind having a chat with them or you prefer to express yourself through your writing?
So far, nobody has come forward with any questions. I want to connect with my readers. I would love to answer any questions they might have especially if I can shed some light on something they might have questions regarding my book.
How do you feel when people appreciate your work or recognize you in public?
I am very grateful for their kindness. I am not that popular to worry about that:)
Who is your favorite author? Why?
My favorite author is Barbara Taylor Bradford. She creates a beautiful aura around the female character in her novels. She shows that women are not only beautiful but very powerful.
What’s the dream? Whom would you like to be as big as?
I admire a lot of writers and their work. However, I would like to be remembered for my work. When I started writing, I wanted to share with the world some of the jewels my country hides that people from here are unaware of. With my writing, I would like to empower young adults and fuel their curiosity to learn more about what made Romania a great country.
Would you rewrite any of your books? Why?
I am working on a new edition of The House of Spark dedicated to adults only. The first edition was dedicated to young adults, introducing them to a world they had never experienced--the communist regime. The latest edition will dive deep into what happened with Romania under Russian occupation and the consequences of the invasion on the country's economy and culture.
If you could switch places with any author – who would that be?
Honestly, I don't know. I never thought of this question.
What would you say to the “trolls” on the internet? We all know them – people who like to write awful reviews to books they’ve never read or didn’t like that much, just to annoy the author.
Instead of spending all that time and energy trying to destroy someone's work, think about what you can do to make this world better. Remember that what you put out there will return to you.
What would you say to your readers?
I hope you will enjoy my book if you decide to read it. If you have any comments, that will be greatly appreciated. I would be more than happy to answer any of your questions. Please do not hesitate to reach out.
Share a bit about yourself – where do you live, are you married, do you have kids?
I was born in Bucharest, Romania, during president Ceausescu's leadership. I was married, and I had three children. Currently, I live in Orange Park, Florida. The sunshine state.
What is your day job if you have one?
I am caring for someone full-time.
What are your hobbies? What do you do in your free time?
In my free time, I like to cook, knit, ride my bicycle, play backgammon, and, last but not least, travel and explore new places and cuisine.
Did you have a happy childhood?
Is there a particular experience that made you start writing?
My mother encouraged me to write and tell our family story quite a few times. What she shared with me at thirteen significantly changed my life and opened my desire to write.
Do you have unpublished books? What are they about?
The House of Spark II. It's a continuation of the first book. Work in progress.
What do you think should be improved in the education of our children? What do we lack?
We should teach our children to be compassionate, caring, and kind. To respect their parents and be grateful for what they have. Children need to learn to be thankful that they have a roof over their heads, clothes to wear, and food to eat. To understand that it is not important how much a pair of sneakers they wear costs or if they are brand name. Instead of just being thankful, they have shoes on their feet to wear.
If you were allowed 3 wishes – what would they be?
I wish for good health.
I wish to have the possibility to spend more time with my kids and grandkids.
I wish for a peaceful world.
What is your favorite music?
Share a secret with us 🙂
I have watched the movie Gone with the Wind more than 20 times, but I never finished reading the actual book after the film was made.